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Us 7, Fong 6, Hillis 3, Peter Strauss 2, Utility Undergrounding 2, Pierce Street 2, Mary Brown 2, The City 2, Condo 1, Ijohn Jonas 1, Jason 1, Millsabilitmills Actand 1, Publicl Basketball Co. 1, Octavia 1, Ceqa 1, Hpc 1, Unrealive 1, Kenneth Wingard 1, John Sham Bray 1, Lastly 1,
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  SFGTV2    [untitled]  

    January 17, 2013
    4:00 - 4:30pm PST  

>> good afternoon. my name is jason, i live at 56 pat tomorrowic street. i've lived there just about 10 years with my family. i absolutely love this neighborhood, the people, the buildings, the parks. it is truly a magical neighborhood in our city. i also applaud the notion of celebrating the history of our neighborhood. i think there's a lot to celebrate there. the process that supervisor wiener and mary brown have followed has been have been good however i'm completely opposed to this particular proposal. i believe that it is redundant in many ways, it's burdensome to the people who live and own in the neighborhood. and it provides nothing for our neighborhood, and in particular the park, which even as mary mentioned is central to the history of the neighborhood.
i've actually e-mailed all of you my specific articles so you have that detailed. what i want to put on the record today is a list of 18 residences, 16 are owners, all of them are opposed to this designation. this is not lent to represent everyone who is opposed but those who i could speak with personally and gave me permission to present their names today. so i have -- i was at the mercy of someone else's printer so i only have one copy but i will provide that. and so despite what i believe are the best intentions by the city to run a survey, i know that myself, i did not receive a card in the mail. i know several other neighbors were not notified. and so that is why i went around and actually started to talking to people because i didn't feel it accurately represented what was going on in our neighborhood. if you look at these numbers what you have is really a
neighborhood that is split. and i think that's unfortunate. i think we're still a very cohesive neighborhood but we are deeply divided on this issue and i would like to put a stop to this particular proposal. thank you for your time. >> president fong: thank you. >> plug this in. provided this computer monitor. you can put a flash card in. they had trouble with other people's computers. >> fair enough. good afternoon. jonathan goldberg i live at 60 potomac street i am here to speak in opposition to dh as well. i want to talk about a few things, in particular i want to address the case made by staff and some of the numbers that mary spoke to you about that i believe are included in your packet. to begin with, neighborhood
sentiment, there was an on-line survey she mentioned which she said 2-1 favored this proposal. in actuality over 50% of the people in the neighborhood did not actually respond to the survey. they got 39 responses out of 88 people that they polled so that's less than half. but then actually if you look into that more detail, she mentioned 87 or 88 residences. that's actually the lot numbers. if actuality there are 160 addresses in the zone covered and if you factor that in you have two-thirds of the people in the neighborhood not responding. i didn't receive any notification of this, so if you factor in people that are miss votes as well you have a pretty evenly split neighborhood, but a very large number of people in the community didn't respond, aren't aware of it. and i think that speaks a lot to the staff's outreach efforts. it really wasn't as strong as
they like to spend all the time they spent on it. people don't understand what's going on in the neighborhood, what's going on with this. in particular there's a lot of inaccuracies. i noticed in the data, in the original proposal if you look on the website the original zone includes a map that covers the zone and includes the park. in more recent addition than probably what's in your packet the historic designation does not include the park. if we're going to have a duboce historic zone shouldn't it include the park. this speaks to the outreach effort that the hpc has no ability to live up to. we talked to them about 16 entrances to the park, maintaining the park better to meet historic standards and they really have no way to enforce that. so finally i also have a question around tax benefits. this has come up a lot in our neighborhood meetings. nobody understands the
millsabilitmills actand to our s taken advantage of it supervisor wiener has improved the law but that sounds like a gini pig situation to me. i emphasize there are people in the community feel this will greatly add to the cost of living there in terms of extra designer fees, contractor, expediter fees and that will make it hard for people with young families to stay in the neighborhood. thank you. >> president fong: additional speakers who have called? >> hello. my name is kenneth wingard on the castro benefit district and the market octavia plan community advisory committee. and have a degree in architectural preservation. today i am here as a four decade resident of the neighborhood. i've renovated a 1860's cottage
that was designated as unsalvageable and in 1905 edwardian that had fallen into disrepair. i fell in love with the neighborhood with these diamonds in the rough and have been delighted at the current glorious state of the neighborhood. there is no question that everyone loves the neighborhood. my lovely neighbors who i respect a lot, myself, it's just a matter of how we should take care of the neighborhood that we love. the charming idea that everyone can look out for the neighborhood themselves is unfortunately unrealive. one needs to look back at the 50's and 60's to see the travesties that can happen but in the recent past, the minor situations like the three unit building across the street from myself on potomac where the owners decided to renovate it, unfortunately through a bunch of inappropriate arguable details and slabs of green marshal on a
victorin building that looks woefully torn divn three different decades, the cottage on germaneia that's been torn down and replaced about i a glass and steel house but the charm of the -- is lost forever. there are homes on 66 pa to himmic, the homeowners have worked to create a stunningly beautiful and appropriate facade that i believe now seamlessly unites potomac street. it is a rare set of circumstances that came together 110 years ago to lead to the creation of these buildings and another set of circumstances in the 50's and 65's and 70's that left them untouched. we have opportunity to stop the risk taking with this neighborhood. these homes were here before we were and with any luck they will be here long after we are gone. we are stewards and our jobs
should not be to maximize return but care for them gently to be passed on to the next generation. i urge to go if order with the 65% of the responders and move this forward. >> president fong: thank you. peter strauss and any other speakers that i've called. >> good afternoon. peter strauss. i have a home at 79 pierce street. first of all, i really want to commend and thank mary brown and the staff for doing what i think is an excellent job in moving this to the state it is today, including the work on the mills act credit in particular, and trying to address some of the concerns of my neighbors. i've lived at 79 pierce for almost 30 years. right after i moved into thei n neighborhood, i immediately became aware of the
architectural consistency of the victorines in our neighborhood. in fact this is a document we were talking about earlier. i quickly became aware of the 1987 preservation element of the master plan. one of the things included in that was a map of architecturally significant buildings in the city by the density per block and it turns out that this area around duboce park, including but not just limited to this proposed landmark district is really the largest concentration of architecturally significant victorines in the city. it's the largest clump of dark black area on this map. and the heart of that is what purports to the historic district today. i also note -- i'm also the owner of a condo at 573 waller, that a friend occupies, which is one of the non-contributing buildings, one of the most
egregious examples of non-contributing buildings, and that leaves me both very aware of a building that deserves preservation, and very aware of what can go wrong when buildings are treated inappropriately. as i understand it, the -- one of the key issues facing the planning commission today is the consistency of the landmark's proposal to the general plan. it was the market octavia planning effort that initiated the product that's before you today. it's in addition to the specific policies, the minut market octaa planned looking at the appropriateness of the historic district. in additionk,jayo establishing n historic distrguc) &w here is consistent with the historic preservation element of the plan. and i would note that the density of the buildings comes
close to the maximum allowed under market octavia and in that sense we already have a dense housing district that supports the transit oriented development policies that are referred to in the materials before you today. so i think you can clearly find this in support. lastly, i would just like to note that even the opponents, you know, come here today, do not refute the architectural integrity of the neighborhood, and in that sense support the architectural validity that's embodied in the landmark's board proposal. thank you for your time. >> president fong: thank you. any additional public comment? ijohn jonas, might be one on the rail there. >> good afternoon, commissioners. my name is pat tura, and i am the president of the duboce triangle neighborhood
association. dtna has been involved in this project for close to seven years. in 2007 the market octavia rezoning historical survey was done. in 2008 the proposed duboce park landmark district was identified and documented as eligible for the national register. in 2011, it was added to the landmark designation work program. the planning staff has done an excellent job in frameworking and doing the due diligence in working with the community to identify the value of this historical resource. they worked at the request of really come to honor and to codify this historic resource there.
as peter said, in this area is found one of the largest concentrations of intact historical buildings anywhere in the city. reason to phase and preserve these buildings. it was at the request of the neighborhood that supervisor wiener worked to amend the mills act to better understand the workings of that act and how it could be used. and at their request and he spoke specifically about the benefit and how it would benefit the neighborhood. they also -- the neighbors also requested the survey. if they chose not to do the survey and some didn't know
about the survey, i find it very hard to believe they didn't know about the survey when they the ones who requested the survey. so dtna supports this historical designation of the district based on its historical merit as well as it fulfills several objectives and policy developments that were developed during the the market octavia area plan. this plan k5u8 called for the designation and protection of important historical buildings. thank you. >> president fong: thank you. is there any additional public comment on this item?lfjçlñpizgç >> good afternoon. i had a card filled o owd out. should i be here now? i john sham bray. i own a property at 75 pierce
street and have been there 28 years. i've come to just about all the hearings and have been in opposition to it since it came to my attention in early 2011. only because i feel that thek3j. historic designation of our neighborhood should have been something that the neighbors, who purchased and maintained these homes, should ask for, not something that the city should be imposing on us. beginning, what does this do for the homeowners, other than add additional loopholes, additional fees, additional approvals, over and above the already inconsistent application of the existing law. it seems unfair to me because they offered nothing. the mills act was redone to make it easier for property owners to
that's great. doesn't help me a bit. i've been there 27 years. it's not going to help me at all. they said at one time it would help us increase the values of our property. i think the city has backed off on that since our property values are already a little bit over the top. what i want to know is why the department doesn't have to follow the same rules that i have to follow when i am asked for something to be done. when i ask for utility undergrounding for our neighborhood i had to talk to every homeowners, not tenants, i had to come to the city and research it, i had to get the name of every single homeowner in a four contiguous block area and then it was my responsibility to get 51% of the homeownership, not 51% of the people who wanted to respond, 51% of the homeowners before the city would consider my request for utility undergrounding.
i'm going through the same process again with sewer replacement, and paving of our streets. it's been neglected for over 27 years. how can you force this on us affected, responding to that survey. somebody said that you're working at the request of the community. you are not. nobody asked for this. it was sent to us. it's being forced on us. and it is not something we want. if you're going to make us a historic district, reward us, don't punish us. thank you. >> presiden.>> hi. susan -- and i live at 47 pierce street. i have lived in my house since 1978. and i have submitted several
e-mails on this topic. in addition to the things that john shombury just mentioned, i know that there was a statement that how could people not know about this survey. well first of all it came out at a very bad time, just before christmas holidays, a lot of people did not receive e-mails, they did not receive postcards. and in going around, talking to neighbors, we found out that there are a lot of people that are absolutely and adamantly against it. the other issue i want to bring up is my house is on the park. and i'm going to be under more scrutiny than any other piece of property. there's 12 properties that are going to be directly impacted by that. most of the remodels of the neighborhoods have been to the back of the building. my building, i will not be able to do much of anything to it. while i am -- you know, i'm --
have limited income, i probably cannot do that. but in selling my house, i don't know that if that will be a disincentive. so i think that's something to think about. and in addition to that, i've been told that i have to improvements to my house, that are completely out of the range of my economic means. so prior to this proposal, i could have done these things. but i can't now. and so when john says how is it going to affect us, i'm the one that has to foot the bill on it, not the duboce triangle's neighborhood association. so please take into consideration the human factor in this and that people like myself, on limited income, cannot afford these kinds of things. thank you. >> president fong: any additional public comment? seeing none, the the public comment portion is closed, and
opening up to commissioners. commissioners hillis. >> commissioner hillis: thanks. just a couple of questions. first, i mean i think this is a gem of a neighborhood, pretty unique, and as you read kind of the details, itá5( #çn makes it, you know, more unique, how intact a lot of these buildings are. and you can -- you know, these neighborhoods don't preserve themselves. you can walk around, like this gentleman said, and see asbestos shingles put on victorines, it's not everybody who kind of takes this seriously, in places, and you can just walk around and see the results. but it seems like the opposition -- again, on the city's process, i think it's not -- we rarely get this much response to a survey, or, you know, looking through the amount of meetings that the planning staff held. i mean i thought it was remarkable, actually, how much outreach has been done, you
know, it's testament that people are here and people are responding to the survey, that speaks to the outreach that's been done. but the objection seemed to be about process in kind of future process, when somebody goes in and makes a renovation to a building, what is different now that you're in a historic district as opposed to now, how is that process different? >> okay. so right now, the -- it is considered an identified eligible historic district for the purpose of ceqa. so changes to the exterior of the building currently are reviewed for compatibility. the department held many community meetings, as we mentioned, and we heard back from the community that there were certain parts of buildings that they were not interested in seeing very strenuous review.
for example, the rear of buildings, in a typical landmark district, any exterior alteration that requires a buildings permit would also require a certificate of proposesness, a hearing of the preservation commission, or in some cases an administrative certificate of appropriateness. what the department did was look at these different buildings elements and possible scopes of work, to see if we could streamline the process for alterations and require less review, and in many cases not require additional review in the form even of an administrative certificate of appropriateness. so many alterations of the non-visible rear properties would not require additional review so that process would be the same. other examples include the replacement of windows which is a big topic. the department currently has a windows replacement standards document that requires that all
buildings in the city,joprx just buildings in landmark districts or even identified eligible landmark districts or even any random building, if it originally had wood windows, the department requires that any replacement windows also be wood. so this comes up frequently. it came up frequently in the -- process, and we did try to address this and emphasized that currently, one cannot replace windows that were historically wood with vinyl windows. regardless of this landmark designation. so that's another option. and because we have these window replacement standards, the department is -- has proposed, in the designation ordinance, that the review of windows for wood windows would not require a certificate of appropriateness. so it wouldn't be additional review if they are wood windows.
>> but about in some cases this would be by virtue of this being a landmark vict. >> in it some cases we have a long designation -- or tailored for certain scopes of work with the goal of putting the larger scopes of work, larger visible horizonal or vertical additions, garage insertions, to try to limit the larger projects that would require full historic prsks commission review. >> then this question of the park and its inclusion in the district or not, what was the rationale for not -- >> this actually came before the 2011 work program discussion on the hpc. the department never proposed adding elements in the park for review. the park has changed quite a bit since it was constructed in 1900. there's a muni portal. there's a publicl basketball co.
it's not a high integrity park and the department did not feel that additional review was required. and as we stated on the record at the 2011hpc hearing, the department proposed initially to include the park boundaries as a gesture and we use the word gesture towards noting the relationship between the park and the residential buildings. because there was so much physical fabric that was lost it didn't seem to make sense to identify elements in the park as character defining that would require review. >> commissioner hillis: and then the mills act is confusing to me. can i summarize how it works. because i understand if you're a new property owner it could benefit you, if you've owned your property for some time it doesn't necessarily. >> correct. the department has been clear about that. the mills act property tax reduction would provide the most
benefit to property owners who have owned their properties since 1999. some of the residents and owners who have owned their building for 20 or 30 years, they already pay low property tax so the bills act calculations would not help them. it would not reduce their property taxes anymore. if you just purchase property and it's a contributor to the district you would have high property taxes. the only people who can apply for the mills act property tax reductions are owners of properties of individual landmarks or owners of properties contributors to landmark districts as well as registered landmark districts. so designation of the duboce park landmark district would
enable property owners to apply for the mills acted. it's not a dollar for dollar reduction. the mills act is a maintenance restoration or rehabilitation plan. it's a contract that the city enters into with the property owners, department reviews it, the city tax assessor reviews it and ensures the calculations are correct but it's not a dollar per dollar duction. if you were a new propertier you wouldry with you out agreed to scopes of work to maintain your property. for example window repair every five years or you would agreejáñ that in seven years you would replace your roof, or if you wanted to restore certain architectural elements to the building that could be included in the process as well, or agree every five years, you're going to have a qualified contractor come in and look at the building for term iefts or water damage
or retail. ultimately the historic preservation commission would also weigh in on this, look at the project to make sure it would be an important benefit to the city and the board of supervisors has the final vote. >> thank you. we're on hold now.
>> and then increase in property taxes. there were some opponents that said it could increase the taxes. i don't know how it could if you could explain. >> if a property owner wanted to apply for mills act the department would strongly discourage that and not allow that person to apply so there is no way it will increase property taxes. >> well, there are some improvements that you would make that would raise the property taxes but that would happen anywhere. >> correct. >> and mills -- from what i am understanding from mills it's